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Below is a family biography included in Biographical Record of Oakland County, Michigan published by Biographical Publishing Company in 1903.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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Mrs. Hannah Ann Newman. The venerable lady whose name introduces this sketch is one of the most highly esteemed residents of Pontiac township, Oakland County, Michigan, her home being in section 12. Mrs. Newman was born September 30, 1812, at Covert, Seneca County, New York, and is a daughter of John and Sarah (Proll) Fisher, who were natives of New Jersey. John Fisher removed to the State of New York in 1809 and in 1835 came to Oakland County, Michigan, and spent his last years on a farm in the home of a son, dying in 1854, aged 91 years and 11 months. Thus Mrs. Newman comes of long lived ancestry.

Just prior to removing to Oakland County, in 1835, our subject was united in marriage with Justin S. Newman, who was born at Lima, Livingston County, New York, and was a son of John Newman, who was of English parentage. The parents of Justin S. Newman had six children, viz: Ezra, Lewis, Alva, Olive (Whitney), Chastina (Fisher) and Justin S. Mr. Newman died on the present farm of Mrs. Newman in December, 1882, after a long and industrious agricultural life. After marriage, the young couple started for their Western home by way of the Erie Canal, at that time considered a wonderful piece of engineering and a transportation line that could scarcely be excelled, and from Buffalo to Detroit by steamboat. There the weary travelers were met by Mr. Axford with two strong teams of horses, attached to a lumber wagon. No seats or conveniences of any kind had been thought of and in this rude vehicle the pioneers traveled through the woods, over obstructions and through streams, for five days and nights before they reached the little log cabin, 12 by 14 feet in dimensions, which was to be their home. Mr. Newman purchased 160 acres in section 12, Pontiac township, the land being heavily timbered and thus more valuable than it would have been had it been without timber. The cabin served as a home for three years and then a larger and more comfortable one was built in which the family lived until 1854 when the present commodious residence was erected. Mr. Newman devoted his life to farming and left a competency to his family. He was a Whig in his early days and was later affiliated with the Republican party, at all times being in opposition to slavery. Through the efforts of himself and wife, the Baptist Church at Oakland was organized and he contributed liberally to its support. After 48 years of married happiness, Mrs. Newman was bereft of a kind, good husband. She has many friends in the neighborhood, and her children are: John J., deceased, who left one child, Lena M.; William R. (residing on the Newman homestead with his mother), who married Lizette A. Brower, daughter of George and Esther Brower of Port Huron, Michigan, and has these children, — George W., Leo B. and Lulu Ruth; Mrs. Candace A. Giddings, of Montcalm County, Michigan, who has one child, Jesse R.; Mrs. Harriet W. Bullock, of Pontiac, who has one child, Lilla; Alfred, who has these children, — Robert Hess, Lewis S., Nellie M. and Maggie A.; Edwin, of Tuscola County, Michigan, who has these children, — Justin S. and Florence May; Mrs. Mary Axford of Pontiac, who has these children, — Bessie A., John Newman, Olive and Elizabeth; and Ada Grade, who lives with her aged mother.

Mrs. Newman has 16 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, and is the center of this closely bound, affectionate family. She retains her faculties to a remarkable degree and easily recalls events of historic interest. She was personally acquainted with Chief Pontiac and many of his braves and remembers the time of the former’s death. She has always been a woman of Christian kindness and during the Civil War interested herself in securing provisions and necessities for the boys in the field.

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This family biography is one of numerous biographies included in the Biographical Record of Oakland County, Michigan published in 1903. 

View additional Oakland County, Michigan family biographies here: Oakland County, Michigan Biographies

View a map of 1911 Oakland County, Michigan here: Oakland County Michigan Map

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